“In and out, day after another,
His bullshit or theirs, racking up the piles
One from his, one from them and one from yours truly
To build a shit hole, all covered and all elite,
All for a picturesque memory in their mind
Till the gloss paint in their hand is dry beyond life,
To fixate the destiny story to every living soul alive
Or dead, by ‘caste’gating the challenger or lynching the dissidents,
The torch bearers of our generation have their hands full,
Blood or saffron, it doesn’t really matter how it happens
A world sinuating around a single story with a prescribed role
And an undying, etched with an imaginary knife, status for one and all;
Change is blasphemy and inequality t...
“Identities. They are distinct yet complementary to one another; weaving themselves together into a cloak of personality which we so proudly wear as something we completely own. But we tend to forget that these layers have been merged and superimposed from the pieces of reality that society as a whole begets, thus evolving independently with the passage of time. Thereby making our individual acts nothing more different than the past, though camouflaged with a new style of packaging and delivery which successfully keep us astray from the desired change.
Take for example, religion. The order that emphasised on peace and service to humanity has been twisted and berated for antagonising the ver...
"There was this man who I remember seeing couple of years ago, a peculiar individual in his own right. He was draped in a saffron dhoti with number of beads around his neck which in turn was shielded with his really longish grey beard. His hair was unkempt so was his walk, absent minded it felt. But his eyes had an altogether new story on offer. Despite the wrinkles sagging over his cheeks, his sunken eyes had remained full of life as if they had never aged. There was a sense of excitement in his voice as he narrated the tales from mythology related to the Dashashwamedh Ghat on the banks of River Ganga, the place where we had been for the past two hours. Our itinerary had a long list of plac...
“Sea. I had heard a lot of stories, a few from my parents and a few by my friends but I as such never witnessed the spectacle, the grace of the deep blue sea. However, events of the past few nights had left us with no option but the sea. It took us over six hours manoeuvring through the forests to reach the coast. We had been extra careful to avoid the trigger happy guards, after all it was my dad who was leading the escape. There were over fifty of us moving together, some were carrying steel boxes on their head while a few brought along their cattle, but the most astonishing was the woman cladded in red. Her clothes were tattered at the edges while her skin bore many visible bruises, howeve...
"People usually fixate on how Delhi has only two seasons, the pinching heat of summer and the scathing cold of winter. Their premise is neither completely wrong nor completely right but for a person like me who loves the very onset of winter, there exists four. The two additions are very short in nature; they tend to disappear before we could realize their surreal existence. It was in March of ’96 when I made my first addition.
I was born and brought up in Delhi but the transition between winter and summer remained unacknowledged until then. It wasn’t a blink and a miss phenomenon; it took its own sweet time to mature while providing the time for us to adapt. But I only noticed it when I fe...
“Trouble finding framing engaging
Words that remain prudent to you
Me and them; words that keep the unruly
From uniting, from blabbering their way
Across with their nonsensical frame
Of reference that divide you and me
Into us and them through simmering discontent
Spread by exploiting the fragility in our mutual intent
To break the harmony by monopolising the reality
Established over a land buried with the trampled voices of dissent,
The voices that fought for you, me and them,
The voices that were finally silenced through the barrel of a gun
Leaving ideas in the word without their needed halo
While keeping the oppressed divided and the oppressors united
By building a notion in our mind t...
"Conversation. All that it takes is a conversation. It could be in your drawing room behind that cup of coffee, or while hiding together behind the blanket on a freezing day. It just happens. The unspoken words find their voice; the long kept guilt, the long held secret, the deep rooted prejudice, all these notions blown out of proportion in our mind, find their answers through a simple conversation. That's what it always took. So clear your throat, adjust your shirt, and then finally talk."
"They said that marriages are made in heaven. They said that there is one other person in the world who is perfect for you and without them you remain incomplete. I disagree. I don't believe that this is the only truth that exists. There are many other narratives that are equally true.
First love is always special. We have dreams for a future together; we imagine the wedding bells, the shiny dresses we would be wearing, the place we would settle, all of that within the span of long conversations we have while burning the midnight oil. There is that fascination about the other; the voice, their laugh, anything and everything about them seems really cute and beautiful. We get the feeling rea...
"There are way too many to point fingers at, it's way too easy from our home made podiums. It's far from comfort to get our own hands dirty, it's way too difficult to make that change a reality. It isn't a lot about the other who we point fingers at, it's a lot about that other within us. The other who is too busy to raise a hand, the other who has too many faces to satisfy. The other who relies too much on spoken letter, the other who has too little of spirit to offer. I believe in the change of that other, I believe that the change begins within."
"Why do our movies and us try finding our answers in black or white while our life remains grey from start to the end. Isn't exaggeration a ploy we tend to use to put our point across for wide unrelenting attention.
I find people mooted for an ideology, giving irrelevance to change while exaggerating the untrue to make their side of truth, the only reality for others to believe. The left think they are right, the right think they are no wrong, while I stand with many in the middle, watching the sheer Idiocracy both try to paint. I like many fail to understand, what does ideology have to do when you know humanity triumphs all. Why do you want to paint red or saffron when we are still unabl...
"I have this habit of scrolling through my Facebook wall on a regular basis, I am pretty sure I could find many like me. I halt at all the travel pics that come by, showing the diverse range of places people are travelling all across the globe. It's fascinating to be honest especially for a guy like me, who has been in constant company with the city Delhi for over four years now.
Apart from my daily hassles to achieve my much needed break from joblessness and achieving that distant dream, I travel. My next statement might be at odds with my previous one, bear with me and continue; apologies in advance. The maximum I have traveled in recent times would be the 45 minute metro ride which I now...
"The ball crashed into Mrs. Jadhav's house, shattering the window glass into pieces. It was stuck with immense power by Sunil, a thirteen year old kid from the neighbouring colony. He was touted to be the next cricketing sensation from the neighbourhood which had seen over ten representations in the Indian cricket team in past five decades. His father, Raghav, a former Mumbai Ranji team member, was a close friend of Daksh, Mrs. Jadhav's only son. Sunil rang the bell twice before Sunitha answered. She placed the ball in his hand with a gentle smile on her face. "Next time, hit it towards Mrs. Dsouza's house. She was laughing when you broke mine. It's time for payback!"
"Dadi, I am sorry." S...
"In an anxious little world of ours,
A world with a story full of contrasts,
Where peace is sold at a price
Too costly for the poor to bear,
And too cheap for the rich to ever notice;
Where men are treated as demigods
Whose gentle touch could awaken the dead,
While the women are the gentle objects
Gifted among the demigods with a nominal fee, dowry;
Where people believe in others
To such an extent that they treat them as God
And disbelieve in themselves, and their very own
To leave them at Vrindavan at the mercy of their Lord;
Where we preach cleanliness and hygiene in the nation
And promote Vasudeva Kutumbakam around the world,
While the sewer deaths continue to happen,
And the commun...
The Lost Friend
Another arduous day to begin with. The rain had given no signs of calming down even after two days of continued turbulence. The town had come to a virtual stop, there were hardly anyone on the streets and rightly so; the IMD had passed a flood warning, earlier today. I had just arrived at the place a couple of days ago, in search of a lost friend who my other mates claimed to be living there. It would seem odd to explain that the reason I was there in search of her was to get a piece for my story about the memory we created years ago.
She was my first actual friend to be precise, at least the first person who approached me. We were around 10 when we first met, it was her p...
"Sometimes we pull so many things out from our hat that it becomes impossible to get all of them back in."
"I don't seem to remember you anymore. You don't cross my mind during the busiest of days nor the loneliest of nights. It feels like I have forgotten how your voice sounds like, how that smile of yours comes about. You only appear like a haze in the memory down the lane, in the streets of our past. The ones I had been lost for long but still wandered nowhere but there. You were my companion in the innumerable walks my thoughts took me along, modifying and altering the universe for you and me to finally fit which the reality negated with silence. The unanswered messages, the unreturned calls, they don't cause my heart to pound heavily anymore, it seem to not matter. The perpetuity surrounding...
"I don't seem to remember you anymore. You don't cross my mind during the busiest of days nor the loneliest of nights. It feels like I have forgotten how your voice sounds like, how that smile of yours comes about. You only appear like a haze in the memory down the lane, in the streets of our past. The ones I had been lost for long but still wandered nowhere but there. Finally there is this sense of freedom, a feeling of being on my own at last, without the baggage of disappointment and loss. The shackles that I had locked myself in is finally broken, and you, I don't remember anything anymore."
"Abhi na Jao chod kar, ke dil abhi bhara nahin..." hummed the radio as we got ourselves entangled in the long haul of a traffic signal. I looked towards her as the song played out and quickly looked away as I caught her attention. She was adjusting her hair, tying it up neatly while placing the diamond shaped bindi, just above her nose.
"I am ready." She exclaimed.
"Isn't getting ready something that needs to be done at home?"
"It's home when I am there with you." She shot back.
"Ah, I see. That's why you are leaving me and going?"
"Dumbo, I am going only for a week and moreover it's a ritual that the new bride should return to her parents place after six months."
"Who cares about the ...
“Humanity, love for a fellow human being, is it some sort of a bargain we have to dish out every time we meet or converse with an another. Does it come out naturally to us or is it forced upon, like the innumerable veils we garb ourselves with. Couldn’t we just enforce a default and forget paying back the goodwill which others generously spend on us. Why can’t we treat it as an economic good, scare and non-renewable, using it only when we generate profit from it. Isn’t manipulation a quality? Why is it seen as a crime? Why do people see me as a misfit when they do what I do but only implicitly? It’s a strange world out there.”
The invisible thoughts flew around one after the ...
"I lay there among many other envelopes at the corner of a dark room, the room which the just married couple had used for storing their glittery presents and beautiful bouquets that they had received at their reception. It was a fancy affair I must say which actually made me feel left out; I was a simple white envelope which didn't have even a tiny glitter at its ends, so you surely can understand the inferiority I was going through.
I was cramped here in this room for both space and breath as Paisa Bhai, a healthy looking envelope, had landed over me in search for comfort. It had a smell of wealth all over it which made it harder for me to survive as I tried with all my might to retain th...
"I opened the door and quietly sneaked in. It was pitch dark inside, with loud sounds of snoring coming from the other end. I tip toed myself towards the corner room where lay my prey, the one I had been commissioned to permanently rest. It was my first time and I was only eighteen then. My hands were shivering out of anxiety as the knife was slipping down with sweat; I whispered out the name of my almighty, our protector to pardon me for my sin which I was about to commit. I slowly peaked in to check if the room was locked but to my surprise it wasn’t so. It was an unpleasant one; I was in no position to kill someone even if he happens to be the one responsible for towing down my enti...
"Come to me on a greyish night,
See to it that you stay till the rainbow light."
"I always felt that it was me who had to apologise first. The spontaneous anger, the emotional fallout and finally the apology, they all seemed to happen at quick pace for me. I didn't wait a lifetime to apologise, I felt what could be corrected soon needs to be addressed first. So time and again I had a fallout with someone, I was the one to approach for a patch up. It did feel annoying after a point of time, especially when the mistake pointed to the other side. But a habit so organically inculcated wasn't easy to forego, even if it meant to be taken for granted by many.
The first time I realised this was when Priya and I parted ways. It was her decision which I had to honour, but my hear...
"The cello was untouched, the red lacing on the cover wasn't even undone. The present stood in their front room for over a week now, but Anu wasn't ready to open it alone. Though Adarsh had gotten it for her but she wasn't going to use it in his absence. He had gone to Europe to attend a conference, it was a week long session; the cello had arrived the day he left, it was a surprise he had planned for her. She didn't know that even the date of arrival was planned. That morning when she waited for Adarsh, she received a message from him. It left her shattered to pieces as she sank into her sofa with tears in her eyes. But her eyes were stuck on the cello; the tears kept rolling down but the ey...
"Either history is strange or the leaders ordinary, the events turn out to be no different than the past."
"Oblivious to the innate things that define one, we seek thoughts & desires alien to one to fit in the lie the world portrays with scary ease. Doubting the word, the paper, even our personal self, of ever writing a piece that would turn out to be famous one day. Writing for the sake of turning eyeballs, the words that gloss even in shade, to depict a gleeful you, the one who you know isn't even close to you. The unrestrained emotion, the element of honesty, the depth in pain, the fall of love, the ones which drive the piece crazy, the ones that truly define you aren't found anymore. They have been neatly tucked deep inside our shelves, not to be found, not to be searched ever again. Occasiona...
"Can we?" I said in a nervous tone.
"Why won't we?" Came a prompt reply from her.
We hugged and kissed before we fared each other a final goodbye. We were going away in opposite directions to different regions all together, but our resilient love wasn't going to fall apart so soon.
"Will you?" I shouted.
"Always forever." She shouted back as she disappeared between the crowd at the airport.
I got back onto my bike with her thoughts intact, trying to recollect every little detail of her today. Her nose ring, her long curly hair, her contagious laughter, her hazel eyes, and that small dimple on her left cheek, I remembered everything about her yet I felt incomplete. It was a feeling which...
"She appeared from behind, slowly measuring her steps before she took them. The crowd stood agitated in front of her house while she stood before them, head down. Between her and the crowd stood her father and Ram. The noise grew louder with every dialogue her father and the crowd spoke, ultimately it was her father who had the last say. The villagers returned back to their humble huts but a decision was still not taken. Her father had to approve of Ram which was in no case easy. He belonged to a different region, a different caste, and most importantly even his parents weren't in agreement with him in this. This made the matters more complicated but Sita was determined. She spoke to her fath...
"When the sun is hotter than it actually is,
When the moon is invisible though it is full indeed,
When the wishes are more than the things we achieve,
When the fate is cursed more than it happens to be,
When the smile that touches ain't real to believe,
When the tear that appears stays forever inside,
When the mind wanders into the past for a future
Other than the present it is turning out to be;
It isn't a pleasant place, to be honest, for one to be,
But it is a place where everyone stays, one time or the other,
Before they leave for the other part of their journey
With experience in hand and a dream to believe,
So till then, we will fight tooth and nail our battle
Until we achieve m...